AA Istanbul Visiting School, in collaboration with Istanbul Bilgi University, is a unique learning and making experience. The programme continues to build on its expertise on generative design methodologies and large-scale prototyping techniques from previous years, while bringing together a range of experts from internationally acclaimed academic institutions and practices, Architectural Association, Zaha Hadid Architects, among others.

AA Istanbul Visiting School investigates the inherent associations between form, material, and structure through the rigorous implementation of innovative design and fabrication techniques. Computational methods for design, analysis, and fabrication are coupled with physical experimentation, fostering ‘learning-by-experimentation’ in an active collaborative studio environment. Throughout the design and fabrication processes, the associations between various computational platforms establish correlations between form-finding, material computation, and structural performance. The key objective of the programme is the design and fabrication of a 1:1 scale prototype realised by the use of robotic fabrication techniques.


Participants will be part of an active learning environment where the large tutor to student ratio (4:1) allows for personalized tutorials and debates.
The toolset of AA Istanbul includes but is not limited to Rhinoceros, Processing, and Grasshopper, as well as analysis software.
Participants have access to digital fabrication tools such as 3-axis CNC router, laser-cutter, and 3d-printer.
Design seminars and lecture series will support the key objectives of the programme, disseminating fundamental design techniques and relevant critical thinking methodologies.


Participants will gain an insight of material processes, computational methods, and various fabrication techniques, culminating with core concepts related to complexity in design practices. During this stage, basic and advanced tutorials on generative design algorithms and analysis tools will be provided. Building on its core methodology from its previous versions, AA Istanbul VS will perform as a team-based workshop promoting collaboration and research. Participants will be introduced to advanced fabrication techniques.

Stage 02

Participants will propose design interventions based on the skills and knowledge gained during the first stage. Study models of various scales will be produced, finally followed by the robotic fabrication and assembly of a full scale working prototype which unifies the design goals of the programme.


Design Studios :: Technical Tutorials :: Lectures

The programme is organized as one complete design unit led by tutors from the AA and Bilgi University. The brief is explored with the aim of offering new forms of experimental architectural knowledge, critical thinking, and design research.


Team Based Design :: Learning by Experimentation

The programme is organized around the concept of experimentation. The outcomes do not present themselves as ultimate answers to the design problems, but as part of an ongoing process of design experimentation.


Computation :: Digital Fabrication

One of the major goals of AA Istanbul Visiting School 2015 is to demonstrate the continuity of the workflow between computational software and digital assembly procedures leading to large-scale physical fabrication.